In the 2015 film, The Lobster, single people have 45 days to find a partner with at least one key trait in common with them (could be anything, love of the outdoors, matching catsuits, a hangnail), or be turned into the animal of their choice.
(Alternatively, they can reject romantic love altogether and, if they can manage the harrowing escape from society, live in the wilderness amongst a motley crew of single people known as The Loners. But that’s where the plot meanders about and becomes dry and rather unengaging.)
But still. A neat premise, that: the literal dehumanization of people who do not conform to heteronormative standards of coupledom, if not outright love. It is ostensibly a punishment for being single…though as a reward for not being in a relationship, there are worse things out there certainly.
Imagine it. Any animal. You choose.
The animal of choice for the protagonist, David, is the lobster: they are long-lived and anyway he’s always loved the sea. His brother chooses to be a dog. One woman chooses to be pony. Yet another hopeless person decides to be a wolf.
For me, it would be a hard decision.
But I think I’ve narrowed down the list:
1. A Cat.
So I can judge you.
2. A Galapagos Tortoise.
So I can be alone with my thoughts for 100 years.
3. A Bumblebee.
Hive mind, hive mind! Hivemindhivemindhivemind!!!
4. A Giant Squid.
Ten big arms so I can terrorize all the seamen.
5. A Pangolin.
So hot right now.
6. A Black Rain Frog.
My inner self turned out and made fabulous.
7. A Spotted Hyena.
Such a gorgeous laugh it’s crime not to have it.
8. A Dung Beetle.
Because why not a dung beetle?
9. A Caiman.
Like, an alligator, but not so much.
10. A Moth.
OK, for real. I want to be The Mothman.
I suppose deciding on your choice animal is, actually, a lot like deciding to commit to a relationship. Everyone has their reasons, their likes and dislikes and preferences for the long term, or at least for the foreseeable future.
Whatever those are, and whatever that is.
11. A Pelican.
I would really enjoy that beak.